August 2013 Indie Next List
“In her glorious new novel, Ms. Thalasinos has created a modern middle-aged woman living in two different worlds, neither of which is making her happy. First of all, Paula Makaikis has been sleeping on a basement couch for most of her 10-year marriage to a hoarder and hiding this fact from her family and friends. Then, her job as Director of Immigrant Studies in New York City is equally frustrating until she is asked to translate the words of a dying Greek elder with a dog named Fotis, who only understands commands in the Greek language. Suddenly, Paula takes a leave of absence from her job, adopts Fotis, and begins the journey that will eventually take her to Grand Marais, Minnesota and a raptor rehab center. Her discovery that humans and animals can relate to each other and heal even the most wounded of either party makes this amazing novel so powerful - combined with the generational humor, unlikely friendships, love and the sense of place near Lake Superior! I really loved this story and could not put it down - truly can't wait to handsell this terrific book!”
— Kathleen Dixon, Islandtime Books & More, Washington Island, WI
Paula Makaikis is ashamed of her marriage. Driven out of their bedroom by Roger's compulsive hoarding, she has spent the past ten years sleeping downstairs on her husband's ratty couch. Distant and uninspired, Paula is more concerned with the robins landing on her office window ledge than her hard-earned position at the university.
Until a phone call changes everything.
A homeless Greek man is dying in a Queens hospital and Paula is asked to come translate. The old man tells her of his beloved dog, Fotis, who bit a police officer when they were separated. Paula has never considered adopting a dog, but she promises the man that she will rescue Fotis and find him a good home. But when Fotis enters her life she finds a companion she can't live without. Suddenly Paula has a dog, a brand-new Ford Escape, an eight-week leave of absence, and a plan.
So Fotis and Paula begin the longest drive of their lives. In northern Minnesota, something compels her to answer a help-wanted ad for a wildlife rehabilitation center. Soon Paula is holding an eagle in her hands, and the experience leaves her changed forever.
An inspiring story about fate, family, and healing, this novel explores what is possible when we cut the ties that hold us down and the heart is free to soar.
"Traveling Light" by Andrea Thalasinos is an inspiring story about fate, family, and healing.
About the Author
ANDREA THALASINOS, Ph.D., is a professor of sociology at Madison College. She is the author of An Echo Through the Snow, an inspiring novel that combines her longstanding passions for dogs, nature, and native peoples. Andrea lives and writes in Madison, Wisconsin.
Praise for An Echo Through the Snow:
“Destined to become a classic.”
—Susan Wilson, New York Times bestselling author of One Good Dog
“An historic, inspiring, and uplifting race to the finish.”
“Compelling and evocative.”
—Patricia McConnell, Ph.D. author of The Other End of the Leash
“Powerful debut...stark, gorgeous prose and a timeless story of love realized, lessons learned, and paths taken.”
—Booklist (starred review)
“Beautifully drawn and emotionally resonant.”
“An immensely readable story about how dogs heal us and lead us, sometimes through harsh cold and deep snow, to places of great beauty and safety.”
—Stacie Williams, Boswell Book Company, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
“Delicate and vivid...an elaborate weaving of past and present.”
—Michelle Diener, author of In a Treacherous Court